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Newman, Troy - 1995 It's Like This

ARTIST: Newman, Troy
ALBUM: It's Like This
LABEL: Mega Pop/Edel
SERIAL: 77658
YEAR: 1995


LINEUP: Troy Newman - vocals, guitars * Waddy Wachtel - guitars * Bob Glaub - bass * C.J Vanston - keyboards * Russ Kunkel - drums * Luis Conte - percussion * Craig Fall - banjo, mandolins

TRACK LISTING: 01 The Missing Years * 02 It's Like This * 03 World Gone Crazy * 04 William Street * 05 Something About You * 06 Rise Up * 07 Carnival * 08 What Is Love * 09 Don't Make Me Ask * 10 Gotta Get Away * 11 I Go To Pieces

This is the second release from Aussie pop/West Coast singer/songwiter Troy Newman. Troy first captured our attention on the excellent debut from 1991 called 'Gypsy Moon'. That album came out of nowhere and had big backing behind it. As the story goes, Troy was plucked from virtual obscurity in his homeland Australia, firstly as a 15 year old in Perth, then later Sydney, and shipped off to LA to work in with some seasoned LA session kings, primarily with Waddy Wachtel. That album was a great mixture of AOR, pop, and southern tinged R&B, though it took four years to follow that up with this one 'It's Like This'. The music has changed, in that it has become more mellow, and operates in the same area as John Cougar Mellancamp, and a softer version of Venice. The image has changed markedly too. Gone is the boy next door look, in favour of a more unkempt look a la Michael Hutchence (R.I.P). I wonder if Troy caught got in all the trappings of temptation while in L.A? One could easily imagine that he did..

The Songs
'The Missing Years' is the opening track, and is lovely number fuelled by some sparse mandolin lines in between. The title track 'It's Like This' is a subtle and gentle song, while the energy picks up significantly on 'World Gone Crazy'. 'William Street' has some interesting guitar lines preceding it, though is spoilt somewhat by a nothing chorus. 'Something About You' is a pleasant upbeat track, while 'Don't Make Me Ask' is an atmospheric song with lovely heartfelt verses. 'Gotta Get Away' is a brash blues workout while the album closer 'I Go To Pieces' is an acoustic effort which to my ears is not particularly inspiring. This one has been covered by some other artists but I haven't heard their versions.

In Summary
An OK album but somewhat lacking the spark that made 'Gypsy Moon' a far superior effort. Nothing was heard of Newman in the music scene since, though he was reportedly doing some musical theatre work back home in Australia. Unfortunately, Troy took ill during the late 90's, and contracted a very bad case of Hepatitis A, which I am sure resulted in his death during 1998, Troy passing away in his sleep. Despite Troy's demise, it would have been pleasing for him to note that in his songwriting capacity, some of his songs were covered by other artists, and some have appeared on movie soundtracks as well. R.I.P Troy.

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#1 | gdazegod on October 06 2008 01:17:01
I have updated this review article, after finding out some more details about Troy Newman, and his apparent passing in 1998. Someone very close to him shared some details just recently on an Aussie music site/forum.
#2 | englandashes on November 06 2008 20:27:49
This album has a special place in my heart, I received it through the post the day my daughter was born, played it again recently and I still think its a very good album, Troy is much missed.

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